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Adaptation of health care seeking behavior during childbirth: Focus group discussions with women living in the suburban areas of Luanda, Angola
Halmstad University, School of Health and Welfare, Centre of Research on Welfare, Health and Sport (CVHI).
Department of Woman and Child Health, Division of Reproductive and Perinatal Health, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Midwifery School, Luanda, Angola.
Department of Public Health Services, Division of International Health, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
2004 (English)In: Health Care for Women International, ISSN 0739-9332, E-ISSN 1096-4665, Vol. 25, no 3, p. 255-280Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this study was to explore how various factors influenced women's decisions regarding place of confinement in Luanda, Angola. Ten focus group discussions were conducted with pregnant and nonpregnant women residing in suburban areas of Luanda and the data were analyzed using the grounded theory technique. Four patterns of action of the main theme, "the molding of women'scare-seeking behavior during childbirth," were identified: (I) the "labor process 'on-course' avoiding pattern"; (II) the "labor process 'off-course' avoiding pattern"; (III) the "labor process 'on-course' approaching pattern"; and (IV) the "labor process 'off-course' approaching pattern." Our findings indicate that personal "courage" and social support empowered women and impacted on their preference for home birth, whereas demand for informal user fees and perceived low quality of care influenced women to avoid institutional care during childbirth, sometimes even in spite ofcomplications. Ability to meet demands for informal user fees and knowledge of childbirth influenced women to seek institutional care. The study highlights the need to improve the quality of available maternal health care addressing the implicit educational, attitudinal, and ethical issues.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
New York, NY: Taylor & Francis Group, 2004. Vol. 25, no 3, p. 255-280
Keywords [en]
Adult, Angola, Decision Making, Delivery, Obstetric, Female, Focus Groups, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice, Humans, Labor: Obstetric, Patient Acceptance of Health Care, Pregnancy, Suburban Population, Women
National Category
Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-514DOI: 10.1080/07399330490272750PubMedID: 15195770Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-1542475459Local ID: 2082/855OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hh-514DiVA, id: diva2:237693
Note

Corrected author affiliations in: (2004) ERRATA, Health Care for Women International, 25:4, 388-388, DOI: 10.1080/07399330490448331

Available from: 2007-02-14 Created: 2007-02-14 Last updated: 2018-07-17Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Challenges and constraints encountered by women and midwives during childbirth in low-income countries: experiences from Angola and Mozambique
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Challenges and constraints encountered by women and midwives during childbirth in low-income countries: experiences from Angola and Mozambique
2004 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis aimed to study the actual and perceived quality of midwifery practices during childbirth at peripheral and central health care levels in two low-income countries, Angola (I-III) and Mozambique (IV-V). Theoretical models interpreting women's and midwives' views have been developed.

Objectives: Study I evaluates midwives' use of an adapted model of the World Health Organization's partograph, a tool used to monitor the progress of labour. Study II describes midwives experiences of working without immediate medical assistance. Study III explores women's perceptions of care-seeking behaviour during childbirth. Study IV observes perinatal midwifery care routines and examine partograph documentation. Study V explores and develops a theoretical understanding of factors perceived to obstruct or facilitate midwives ability to provide quality of perinatal care.

Methods: Study I: A one-group pre-and post-test interventional evaluation of 100 partographs from one peripheral delivery unit. Study II: Semi structured interviews with eleven midwives, analysed in a qualitative process comprising six steps. Study III. Ten focus group discussions with pregnant and non-pregnant women, analysed using the grounded theory technique. Study IV. Pre-and post intervention observation of midwifery care of 702 vs. 616 women during delivery and examination of the partographs. Study V: In-depth interviews with 16 midwives, analysed using grounded theory technique. Educational interventions were designed and applied in study II and IV.

Results: Study I. Significant improvement of documenting was found in seven of the ten variables and more partographs were correctly documented in sample II compared to sample I. Missed transfers increased, however, in sample II. Study II: The midwives experiences were sorted under four main areas: (1) Society/culture (2) Significant Others (3) Personal Self (4) Professional Self. Confidence was felt in the role as autonomous midwives but dependency on various factors such as the partograph, a functional referral system, peer support, community trust and continuous supervision was emphasised. Socio-economic hardships were identified as major stress factors for themselves and the women. Study III: Women seemed compelled to "mould" their care seeking behaviour and four patterns, two 'avoiding' and two 'approaching' institutional care were identified. The salient features of each pattern were found to be "personal courage", [B1]"disempowerment", "discarding traditional practices" and "awareness and emancipation". Study IV. No improvements were found in quality of care following the intervention. Common problems proved to be hypothermia and rare initiation of the graphic part of the partograph, which monitors progress of labour. Study V. A process labelled "changing perinatal care management" emerged, which comprised four dimensions addressing aspects related to i) existing environment ii) midwives' interaction with women in labour, iii) midwifery profession and iv) caring technology in order to improve quality of care. Communication and collaboration were identified as change agents.

Conclusions: The findings in this thesis indicate that midwives' ability to provide quality of maternal and perinatal care in lowincome and post-war affected countries is restricted by organizational, structural, educational as well as attitudinal aspects. Women in need of assistance during childbirth are negatively affected as a consequence of midwives reaction to the various constraints, which at times (Luanda) seems to oblige adverse care seeking behaviour. Midwives recognises the need for change, but change is found to be a slow and complex process, which requires engagement by all levels of the care chain. A model suggesting how to achieve quality of maternal and perinatal care in Safe Motherhood context is presented.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Karolinska University Press, 2004. p. 59
Keywords
Women, Midwives, Maternal and perinatal care, Care-seeking behaviour, Moulding and dimensions of change
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-466 (URN)2082/804 (Local ID)91-7349-822-X (ISBN)2082/804 (Archive number)2082/804 (OAI)
Public defence
2004-03-26, Skandiasalen, Astrid Lindgrens Barnsjukhus. Karolinska Sjukhuset, Stockholm, 00:00 (English)
Available from: 2007-02-05 Created: 2007-02-05 Last updated: 2018-03-23Bibliographically approved

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Odberg Pettersson, Karen

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